In "I Am Ozzy" by Ozzy Osbourne, Osbourne lets us in on every single detail of his life, including intoxicated adventures, drug escapades, terrible jobs and his struggle to becoming the person he is today.
If you think about Ozzy Osbourne, the prince of darkness, lead singer of Black Sabbath, you're usually associating him with satanism, murder, drugs and a lot of hatred. This novel shows that he's absolutely not the person the media portrays him as. He's a sweet, sweet guy, who's maybe a little bit naive, but whose biggest flaw is that he doesn't care about what other people think.
It's hilarious to read about how the band members think about the associations with their name and how they all met each other. There is so much media misconception around his person that I'm just in awe. Then again, you can never know whether this is just another publicity stunt to save his image.
I'm not a die-hard fan of Black Sabbath and I got this novel in the first place because it was recommended to me. You don't have to be a fan of him to enjoy this, but beware: it's graphic. The life of a heavy metal musician is definitely not suitable for highly sensitive people. Osbourne worked in a slaughter house, has a really dark sense of humor and didn't always bring out the best in his friends. It's remarkable that he survived all of the insane things he tells us about in this book if you think about it.
The writing is a little bit slow. You have to consider though that this is not entertainment literature, this is the life of an actual person - it's absolutely surreal to me how one single human being could have possibly experienced that many absolutely ridiculously dangerous situations and lived to tell the tale. I'm not sure whether you can actually believe everything that's in this novel, and to me, it doesn't even matter.
For a biography, it's definitely an action-packed read and really interesting. In most biographies the authors lose themselves in boring details so much that you just want to skip forward to the interesting bits. In "I am Ozzy", you'll regret skimming pages, because you'll most likely miss something huge.
Overall: Do I Recommend?
You don't have to be a fan of Black Sabbath to enjoy this, but it helps. Some parts, especially the forming of the band and his background connections to Led Zeppelin, The Beatles etc. are probably more interesting to fans of the music of the 60s.
However, Osborne managed to write a hilarious, authentic and interesting novel that doesn't even feel like biography. I rooted for him to finally make it big and he definitely won my heart through this novel. I can only recommend to give it a try.